TSA workers calling in sick amid shutdown, union says; DHS denies

'Blue Flu': Hundreds Of Unpaid TSA Officials Call Out Sick At Major Airports

Hundreds of TSA screeners call out sick at major airports amid government shutdown

The federal agency tasked with guaranteeing USA airport security acknowledged an increase in the number of its employees calling off work during the partial government shutdown.

Kennedy Airport, as many as 170 TSA employees have called off sick each day this week, according to CNN. The lack of workers led to officers from earlier shifts having to cover the evenings.

TSA screeners now working at airports across the country are doing so without collecting a paycheck, thanks to the government shutdown.

"CNN has the cell numbers of multiple @TSA public affairs professionals, but rather than validate statistics, they grossly misrepresented them".

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Shortly after the story was published, DHS spokesman Tyler Houlton lashed out at the story, calling it "fake news" and saying the statistics were "grossly misrepresented". Here's some tips to deal with serious security delays at airports that may arise due to the government shutdown.

An average of 25 TSA employees call in sick per shift at DFW. The number of people calling out sick have increased by 200 percent to 300 percent at Dallas Fort Worth International Airport.

TSA union officials claim the call-ins are not an organized protest, explaining workers are calling out to work at second jobs as the shutdown begins to bite.

The federal government shutdown is taking a toll on Transportation Security Administration (TSA) officers, who are now being told to barter for basic needs like shelter.

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In North Carolina, Charlotte and Raleigh-Durham's airports are seeing call-outs jump by 10 percent, local union president Mac Johnson told the news network. "If we go past midweek missing a pay period, that certainly changes the environment", said Michael Bilello, a TSA spokesman. He said wait times "may be affected" but that all passengers would be screened as normal.

"TSA is grateful to the agents who show up to work, remain focused on the mission and respectful to the traveling public as they continue the important work necessary to secure the nation's transportation systems", he said.

The shutdown continues as President Donald Trump and Congress are unable to reach an agreement.

"I travel a lot for work, and I haven't noticed any difference in security around the airports", said another man. To date, however, screening wait times remain well within TSA standards. Airports struggling to staff checkpoints may also start reducing the number of lanes open to passengers, which will likely mean longer lines and waiting times.

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